One of the pioneers of the region, Clive Paton was one of the first to plant grapes on the Martinborough Terrace in 1980 and the winery has since gone on to become a legend of the New Zealand wine industry. Home of the Gumboot clone of Pinot Noir, a cutting from the vineyards of Domaine de la Romane Conti allegedly smuggled back into the country by an enterprising Kiwi in a pair of gumboots. In 2010 Ata Rangi was honored with the Tipuranga Teitei o Aotearoa award, New Zealand's equivalent of Grand Cru status and wine-maker Helen Masters consistently produces some of the countries finest Pinot Noir and Chardonnay.
MIKE BENNIE - THE WINE FRONT
The sauvignon blanc here is given skin contact, barrel and tank time, so there’s complexity built in from the get-go. Great to see texture being built into sauvignon blanc wines with skin fermentation; the rise and rise of modern orange wine culture is quite a thing. Since 2014 there’s been more skin fermentation, since 2017 more whole bunch fermentation. An impressive and delicious white wine that mainlines sauvignon blanc flavours and aromas but layers in so much more detail, length and texture. Citrus, ginger, lemongrass and green mango are the fruit characters but there’s faint nuttiness, coursing flinty mineral character, chalkiness in texture and an extremely piercing and long finish. Fantastic expression here.
JOE CZERWINSKI - WINE ADVOCATE
The 2018 Raranga Sauvignon Blanc follows winemaker Helen Master's recent trend of incorporating a small portion of skin-contact fermentation for increased texture/phenolics and exotic aromas. It's a fine effort, offering up hints of red currants and pink grapefruit on the nose, ample weight and concentration on the creamy-textured palate and a long, tactile finish.